When it comes to protecting your eyes, one of the best things you can do is wear a pair of sunglasses while you’re in the sun. But, shopping for prescription sunglasses can be a bit overwhelming with all of the frame shapes, colors, and, of course, the types of lenses to choose from.
Lenses can be the most confusing part of buying sunglasses as it’s not only about preference, but how you want to protect your eyes. Ultra-Violet protectant lenses and polarized lenses are probably the most common types, but what do they do, and how are they different?
How does polarization work?
Most sunglasses, if they’re worth your money, will have lenses that protect from most UV lights entering through the earth’s atmosphere. However, polarized glasses offer a different type of UV protection — protecting against “horizontal rays,” or rather sunlight that reflects off smooth surfaces such as wet surfaces, car hoods, or snow.
Polarized lenses can do this because of a chemical coating that doesn’t allow unscattered light to pass into the eye. As a general rule with polarized glasses, the darker the lenses, the higher the protection.
What are the results?
The results of Polarized sunglasses, of course, vary by manufacturer and company. Still, the standard results offer a darker picture, which creates more color contrast while doing it’s best to keep the accurate perception of color. When looking at landscapes, objects may look crisper and more precise, making details easier to see. Because they block the glare of the sun, they also help reduce eye strain caused by squinting.
UV glasses and polarized glasses have different benefits, but it’s become more common that if lenses are polarized, they usually offer UV protection as well.
Because of the chemical coating, polarized glasses may make it harder to see LCD screens on dashboard screens and phones, which is something to consider when debating over a pair of polarized lenses or a pair of usual basic UVprotection glasses. Knowing if you want them for outdoor activities like fishing, golfing, snowboarding, or sunglasses you’ll wear while driving will help you narrow down your lens options when seeking a new pair of glasses.
Just like finding the perfect pair of eyeglasses, finding (and wearing) a pair of sunglasses that fit your style and needs is imperative in creating long term eye health and habits. At Bodenhamer Eye Consultants, we have a large selection of eyeglasses for you to choose from. Come find the right pair for your eyes today.